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Agari 2014 State of Email Trust report finds healthcare industry at high risk for cyberattacks

by david.nunes


Low predictability of cyber-attacks increases risk for all 11 industries surveyed; healthcare scores last as US data breaches surge

Agari, the leading provider of real-time, data-driven security solutions that detect and prevent advanced email cyber-attacks, today released the 2014 edition of its State of Email Trust report, an exclusive research study based on analysis of email authentication practices for 147 companies across 11 industries. The report identifies spikes and declines in cyber-attacks across industries throughout the year, revealing companies and industries never know when attacks may occur, nor can they anticipate their breadth and severity.

The State of Email Trust provides email “trust” ratings, or how well companies are protecting consumers from email cyber-threats, and provides email “threat” ratings (ThreatScore), or the volume of cyber-threats targeted toward any given company’s consumers via email relative to other companies and industries analysed. Customers of more than 75 percent of all companies surveyed were identified to be at high risk of malicious email attacks.

“We saw a record number of US data breaches in 2014 and cyber-attacks are a steady drumbeat of increasing breadth and severity, with the FBI now ranking cybercrime as one of its top law enforcement activities,” said Patrick Peterson, founder and chief executive officer of Agari. “For all its ubiquity and convenience, email remains the single most effective and widely used vector of attack. Our State of Email Trust report shows that companies are starting to take email security more seriously, but there’s still a long, long way to go. One step in the right direction is President Obama’s recent proposed initiatives around data sharing that are critical to securing our ever-growing digital economy.”

The number of US data breaches tracked in 2014 surged 28 percent to 783 from the number reported in 2013, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center. The number of US data breach incidents tracked since 2005 hit an unfortunate milestone of 5,029 in 2014, involving more than 675 million estimated records. Commonly, data breaches are followed by email cyber-attacks that worsen the blow for consumers.

Against a backdrop of worrisome healthcare cybersecurity news throughout 2014, the healthcare industry had the worst email TrustScore average of every industry surveyed in all four quarters. Nearly 30 percent of major health insurance companies surveyed scored a TrustScore of zero. In terms of “safe” companies, there has been progress, as the number of those with perfect 100 TrustScores almost doubled in 2014. But this was still a small increase in numbers, from only seven companies to 13 of the 147 companies whose domains were surveyed.

Throughout the year, companies in all sectors appeared to grasp the security-enhancing guarantee and importance of DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance); every industry surveyed saw an increase in average DMARC implementation rates in each quarter of 2014. Since 2012, the DMARC open standard has been enabled on 70 percent of the world’s inboxes. It’s the only security solution enabling Internet-scale email protection, and it prevents fraudulent brand abuse for email-borne cyber-attacks. As a DMARC.org member and contributing author, Agari has joined some of the largest global brands to improve email security.

The latest copy of the Agari State of Email Trust is available for download here.

About Agari

Agari builds disruptive, internet-scale, data-driven security solutions that eliminate email as a channel for cyber-attacks and enable businesses and consumers to interact safely, and is leading an ever-growing coalition of security partners to help fix email for good. The Agari cloud-based SaaS solution aggregates data from 2.5 billion mailboxes to help global brands eliminate email threats, protect customers and their personal data, and proactively guard brand reputation. Today, Agari analyses more than 6.5 billion messages per day, identifies more than 2 million malicious URLs per month, and blocks more than 200 million malicious emails per month. Founded by the thought leaders behind Cisco’s IronPort solutions, Agari, a recipient of the JPMorgan Chase Hall of Innovation Award and recognised as a Gartner Cool Vendor in Security, Agari is backed by Alloy Ventures, Battery Ventures, First Round Capital, Greylock Partners and Scale Venture Partners. Agari is headquartered in San Mateo, California. Learn more at http://www.agari.com and follow us on Twitter @AgariInc.


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